57: Spinach and Endive Salad with Tangerines and Coriander-Crusted Scallops

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On Tuesday night, I made the Spinach and Frisee Salad with Tangerines & Coriander-Crusted Scallops from Eating Well magazine. It’s an incredibly long name, but a pretty tasty salad. This was my first time cooking scallops. They seem incredibly expensive, so I never buy them. When we made our St. Louis/Trader Joe’s trip at the end of February, I found a bag of frozen scallops for a relative bargain (at $10 a pound!), so I decided to try out this salad.

The salad was pretty straight forward. I used a bag of baby spinach and a bunch of endive, which the recipe suggested as a substitution. I bought tangerines, which had to be segmented. This was a pain for me, because I’ve never segmented citrus before. I tried to go off of the vague directions listed in the magazine, which really didn’t work for me without pictures. If I had taken the time earlier to do a quick search, I would have found this slide-show from Bon Appetit which is much more helpful.

I actually had to make the dressing twice because I messed up the first attempt. I decided to see how white wine was in the dressing instead of white wine vinegar, which I don’t have. Then I added rice vinegar, which I knew was a mistake as soon as I did. Then I attempted to save it with another vinegar I grabbed, which was actually apple cider vinegar instead of the plain white vinegar that I thought I had grabbed. This is why it’s vital to taste as you go. I tasted the dressing and knew there was no way to save it, so I pitched it and started fresh – I used the white vinegar for the white wine vinegar, zested a tangerine but orange juice from the fridge, used a little onion instead of a shallot, and added fresh parsley for the herbs. I omitted the Dijon mustard because I don’t like mustard.

Spinach and Endive Salad with Tangerines and Scallops

I didn’t get a good sear on the scallops because I didn’t have my pan hot enough, but they were good anyway. I liked the coriander and black pepper on them. The dressing was nice and light both in flavor and texture. Alex said that he would have preferred the salad as a side salad, since he likes more ‘stuff’ on his salads.

I enjoyed this salad – it was a light meal, yet I was relatively satisfied afterward. (I then proceeded to make cupcakes, which may have made a difference.) If I make this again – and I might – I would consider draining a can of unsweetened mandarin oranges to use instead of tangerine segments, to make it a slight bit faster and easier.

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